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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Or Tendonitis?

Posted by @dawn_giacabazi, Jan 4, 2017

What is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is a painful progressive condition caused by the compression of a key nerve in the wrist.

Tendonitis is literally inflammation of the tendon.

All I know for sure is my wrist and thumbs are killing me. I don’t take pain medication so I’ve is my friend, I started wearing wrist braces at night to see if I could get this under control but each day is getting worse. I was diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome in 2001 by Mayo Clinic and have done great for last 10 years by changing habits and wearing my braces.

How do I tell or can I, if this is a tunnel issue or tendonitis??? Does anyone have any magic home remidies so I can get some sleep tonight??

REPLY

Hello Dawn, sorry to hear about your increasing issues with carpal tunnel syndrome.

I’d like to invite fellow mentors @IndianaScott and @johnbishop in to the conversation. They both have talked about having carpal tunnel and may be able to offer some advice on remedies they have tried in order to manage the pain.

I’d also like to invite @soitis4590, @coladyrev, @sosaidhaq, @glenloig, and @grandma41, who have all talked about having carpal tunnel issues, pain or numbness in their wrists, fingers or thumbs, and how they dealt with those sensations and/or got relief.

Hi @dawn_giacabazi Sorry to hear about the troubles you are having with your hands. I have been diagnosed with severe carpel tunnel in both hands. Came from my years of lifting my wife dozens of times a day. While I am not a medical professional, here is what I have experienced, done, etc.

Two doctors and a third doctor/specialist have each confirmed the diagnosis. I just had the electrical stimulation test run on both hands, arms, and my neck. I’ve had more fun, but it is done.

I have no feeling in any finger tips up to the first knuckle. My thumbs go numb often and the pain radiates down into my hands and up towards my elbows. My grip strength is greatly reduced in both hands. Fine motor skills, such as shirt buttoning, shoelaces, etc. are a challenge.

Nights my hands felt like they were throbbing so hard I could see them. I could not sleep at all. Finally I bought a set of 3M “Futuro Night Wrist Sleep Support, adjustable”. They gave me enough relief I can sleep some now. I am on my fourth set at this time. Love them, but the interior padding tends to get beaten down due to my grasping it in my sleep so I find better relief buying periodic replacements. Tried several of the gloves on the market, but they did not help me at all. I get mine via Amazon, cheaper than my local drug stores.

The medical recommendation is for surgery on both hands at separate times, but I am not psychologically ready for that, nor have I found the ‘right’ doc to perform it. It is not getting any worse and now that I am not doing the lifting any longer I am also doing a bit of waiting to see if nature can heal me at all. Especially since the surgeon here admitted surgery “may or may not relieve the symptoms and most likely will not restore feeling”.

I have no magic bullet nor home remedies, except since cold makes my pain increase, I take some time to wrap my hands in warm towels out of the dryer when it gets really bad.

Peace & strength

@dawn_giacabazi I forgot to mention I am also taking 7.5 mg daily of meloxicam as an anti inflammatory.

Hi Dawn, my carpal tunnel diagnosis earlier this year came when my PMR came out of remission and I was have the same issue with pain in both hands/wrists and nothing helped. I had tried the wrist support sleeves and while they felt good they didn’t help with the pain/tingling at night. When I went to my pcp she said I had severe carpal tunnel which I had thought I had but wasn’t bad enough to do anything. After I started back on 20mg of prednisone for the PMR I still had the pain in the wrists with the left hand being worse. My pcp referred me to the Rochester Mayo Hand Clinic downtown and I received a cortisone? shot which helped a little but wasn’t really a fix. The hand doc said the carpal tunnel surgery would be the next step but I’m not ready for that yet. I did buy a set of Mueller wrist straps/gloves from WallyMart which the hand doc said were as good as the ones they sold for big bucks down in the medical store. They are better than the ones I bought from Amazon because they have a metal support and padding to keep the wrist immobile. I’m thinking the magic bullet for carpal tunnel is the surgery by a good hand doc that has done a lot of them and Mayo has done a lot. My wife’s sister had a botched one done by another clinic in a town close by and she was in a lot of pain which Mayo fixed in a second surgery.

Hoping you will find some relief soon. Keep us posted if you find something that works for you.

John

Thanks John!! Wish I could try the shots but my tumor prevents me. Ice and electrical stem seems to be my best friend. My internal med doc seems to think the tumor has effected my inflammatory response system and things should settle down once it’s gone.

Praying out soon
Dawn

@IndianaScott

@dawn_giacabazi I forgot to mention I am also taking 7.5 mg daily of meloxicam as an anti inflammatory.

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Thank you!! Does meloxicam effect your blood pressure negatively like NSAID’s?? Good idea, I will try heat, maybe ice is a trigger, just always my go to with pain but maybe not the right thing this time.

Thanks
Dawn

@IndianaScott

@dawn_giacabazi I forgot to mention I am also taking 7.5 mg daily of meloxicam as an anti inflammatory.

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No, @dawn_giacabazi I checked with the doctors and my pharmacist.

@IndianaScott

@dawn_giacabazi I forgot to mention I am also taking 7.5 mg daily of meloxicam as an anti inflammatory.

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Thank you so much!! I will give that a try.

@IndianaScott

@dawn_giacabazi I forgot to mention I am also taking 7.5 mg daily of meloxicam as an anti inflammatory.

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Meloxicam IS an NSAID. Presumably a doctor or a pharmacist would have mentioned that in answer to your question.

@IndianaScott

@dawn_giacabazi I forgot to mention I am also taking 7.5 mg daily of meloxicam as an anti inflammatory.

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Yes md said, I absolutely can not take it. With my blood pressure and it will have negative effects on the dumping syndrome. (Vomit horrible stomach bile daily) Stuck with ice, biofreeze, rest, and a brace. 🙁

Therapist taped it a special way which has helped a lot. I was able to rest it and limit my typing and did not drive over the weekend.

Thanks
Dawn

I am actually at Mayo in Rochester for follow-up on my degenerative spine condition. Orthopedics scheduled an appointment with a hand doc and I had an EMG done. Here I thought the numbness and tingling in my hands was diabetic neuropathy…nope….no neuropathy…severe carpal tunnel. The recommended treatment is surgery. Does anyone know anything about recovery from the surgery? How long does it take? Can you drive a car? I am a graduate student and am trying to put the surgery off but no one at the Mayo Clinic thinks it’s a great idea!

@bernese53

I am actually at Mayo in Rochester for follow-up on my degenerative spine condition. Orthopedics scheduled an appointment with a hand doc and I had an EMG done. Here I thought the numbness and tingling in my hands was diabetic neuropathy…nope….no neuropathy…severe carpal tunnel. The recommended treatment is surgery. Does anyone know anything about recovery from the surgery? How long does it take? Can you drive a car? I am a graduate student and am trying to put the surgery off but no one at the Mayo Clinic thinks it’s a great idea!

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I asked that question when I thought I was going to get the surgery done. I’ve put it off for now but am planning to look into later this year. I think the answer depends. Here’s what I found with a search:

This tunnel is narrow, so any swelling can pinch the median nerve and cause pain and other symptoms. A thick ligament just under your skin called the carpal ligament makes up the top of this carpal tunnel. … Thus, it is usually advised that you do not drive until you can make a tight fist without pain or irritation. May 23, 2016.

Also found a YouTube video answer:
When can I drive after carpal tunnel surgery?
http://bit.ly/2jNAhgH

The hand doctor I had at Mayo Rochester was Dr. Julie Adams who was highly recommended by my Mayo PCP. She said she has done a high number of the carpal tunnel surgeries which gives me good confidence. My wife’s sister had the operation and it was botched by a local clinic in a neighboring town in SE Minnesota. She had it fixed with a second surgery at Mayo Rochester but still suffers a little pain from the first one.

John

@IndianaScott

@dawn_giacabazi I forgot to mention I am also taking 7.5 mg daily of meloxicam as an anti inflammatory.

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Hi Dawn,
I’m glad that you are following doctor’s orders and finding time to rest and limiting your typing. We miss you on Connect, but your health is the most important. Get better so you can come back guns ablazing!

Well gave in to further testing, 4 fractures in the left wrist and thumb and 2 in the right. Sever Carpal Tunnel syndrome with complications. Orthodontist on Thursday.

Great info John
Thanks
Dawn

@dawn_giacabazi

Well gave in to further testing, 4 fractures in the left wrist and thumb and 2 in the right. Sever Carpal Tunnel syndrome with complications. Orthodontist on Thursday.

Great info John
Thanks
Dawn

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Praying for some speedy fixing and healing for you Dawn. Makes my current struggle with titrating off of prednisone for my PMR seem so small.

John

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